Being a cross between a Maltese and a Toy / Miniature Poodle, a Maltipoo can vary quite dramatically from dog to dog. Besides, both Poodles and Maltese dogs have very diverse physical features – especially when it comes to the coat! So how do you go about grooming these dogs without a breed standard? Well, let’s find out!
So, how do you groom a Maltipoo? To properly groom a Maltipoo, you need to safely bathe and dry them, clip their nails, brush them, and trim the hair around their face, stomach, eyes, and anus. As they are prone to dental problems, you should also look to brush their teeth. Grooming a Maltipoo should be done regularly; little and often is advised.
As part of this process, you will require several tools.
Namely a brush/comb, precision trimmers, clippers, and either curved scissors, straight scissors, or both.
And while this may seem like a lot to purchase upfront, consider that it will be a one-time buy that sets you up for your dog’s life.
Although they don’t shed very much, these hybrid dogs require regular grooming and can be high-maintenance dogs in this respect.
At the same time, how you decide to groom your Maltipoo depends on the type of coat it has.
But don’t worry.
Soon I’ll be walking you through exactly what you need to do to groom your Maltipoo at home, including trimming the face – step by step.
So stick around!
What Type Of Coat Does A Maltipoo Have?
A Maltipoo’s coat is either wavy or curly, depending on whether they have more Poodle or more Maltese in their genetic makeup.
The length of the coat is medium to long and quite woolly in texture.
As they were originally bred to give allergy sufferers an option for a small dog, they don’t shed much.
This is a result of them not having an undercoat like most dogs.
Maltipoos don’t produce a lot of dander or saliva, so as far as dogs go, they are one of the best options if you have allergy problems.
They do shed slightly more in summer, but it’s such a slight difference you may not even notice.
Just consider, the coat is likely to change throughout the duration of their life.
When they are born, Maltipoos have quite a soft coat.
This will change by the time they reach ten months when their puppy coat will have been completely replaced by an adult coat which is slightly stiffer.
The process can be quite quick in some Maltipoos, while others might be as old as two years by the time they have a full adult coat.
They will naturally shed more while losing their puppy coat.
Depending on the breeding process, i.e., if they are crossed multiple times with a Poodle, their adult coat may be a slightly different texture and/or color to their puppy one.
The coat may either lighten or darken and might become thicker.
If your Maltipoo is more Maltese than Poodle, these changes won’t be as significant.
Irrespective of whether the coat is straight, curly, wavy, or stiff, you will still need to brush your Maltipoo daily.
How Often Do Maltipoos Need To Be Groomed
Aside from daily brushing, Maltipoos need a bath once a month, after which you should clip their nails to keep them at a safe length. Trimming around the face and eyes of your Maltipoo will need to be done at least once a month. The rest of their coat only requires a cut a few times a year.
If you don’t brush Maltipoos regularly, their coats will become matted and trap dirt and debris.
The hair that they shed tends to stay in their coat and get covered in natural oils produced by the skin.
If not removed through brushing, they could start to smell or create sores on the skin.
When bathing your Maltipoo, you need to use a shampoo that is specifically designed for dogs. Otherwise, their coat could become dry and damaged.
They are small enough to be bathed in a sink with warm water.
Make sure not to douse your dog’s head with water – wet a cloth and gently wash the face and ears.
You shouldn’t bathe Maltipoos more than necessary. Otherwise, they lose the essential natural oils needed to keep their skin moisturized.
Maltipoos can be prone to developing tear stains.
To prevent this, wipe under their eyes with a damp cloth twice a day.
Be careful using any products other than those that have been advised by your vet.
There are a lot of owners who use harsh products like hydrogen peroxide, which can seriously harm a dog.
If you decide to give your Maltipoo a haircut yourself, it can be a little bit tricky.
You would probably give them a “puppy cut.”
This is the most popular cut and is easiest for those who are not professional groomers.
A puppy cut is where the coat is cut very close to the body, with the hair on the face slightly trimmed and shaped.
How Do I Groom My Maltipoo At Home?
When it comes to brushing, you need to choose your brush depending on the type of coat your Maltipoo has.
If the coat is more like a Poodle, i.e., fine, thin and curly, you will need a slicker brush.
A thicker and coarser coat like a Maltese requires what is called a pin and bristle brush.
This is a more heavy-duty brush and gives you two options, a pin side, and a bristle side.
Here are the best selling brushes in their category on Amazon:
You will use whichever is more effective on your dog’s coat.
A Maltipoo with a coarse coat will need brushing more often than one with a Poodle-like coat, as it is more susceptible to matting.
If the coat is exceptionally knotty, use a detangling spray applied to the brush before grooming.
This is the spray to get from Amazon while you are at it!
Begin at the feet, brushing away from the skin while gently working out the tangles as you find them. If the brush is not doing the job, try a comb.
When it comes to clipping your Maltipoo’s nails, you can use either a nail grinder or a guillotine-style clipper.
Go slowly to ensure you don’t nick one of the blood vessels in the nail bed.
It’s a good idea to have someone with experience teach you how to clip nails before trying it yourself.
If you want to give your Maltipoo a puppy cut yourself rather than going to a professional groomer, the first step is to trim the body with clippers.
When it comes to getting clippers, it’s advised to get ones that allow you to adjust the blade length via plastic heads. This clipper set on Amazon includes 6. It’s ideal.
Adjust the setting to your preferred length. Skim the clippers in the direction of the hair growth if your dog has Poodle-like hair and against if they have Maltese-like hair.
How short you cut the coat often depends on the season.
Naturally, in winter, you would keep it slightly longer.
After you have finished the body, move onto the stomach and genitals.
As these are very sensitive areas, the hair should be short as possible.
It’s better to use curved scissors to apply the finishing touches as you will have more control and are less likely to nick the skin.
Once you have done the legs, trim around the anus.
This is important as it stops any feces from becoming entangled in the coat.
Your curved scissors are ideal for this task.
How Do I Trim My Maltipoo’s Face?
How you trim your Maltipoos face will depend on the area, and the longer the hair has grown before you decide to trim.
Nevertheless, for facial trimming, it makes sense to use a clipper and some curved scissors, like this on Amazon.
Start between the eyes.
Cut the long hairs near the corners of the eyes with your scissors.
Use your trimmer on the hair directly between the eyes.
As you want to keep the hair here longer than on the body, set your trimmer to its longest length.
The next step is to brush your Maltipoo’s hair forward from the top of the head down.
Use curved scissors to trim it into an arch-like shape above the eyes.
It’s a good idea to go slowly, taking off small amounts at a time to make sure you don’t cut the hair too short.
Grooming the hair on the top of the head and neck is relatively easy.
Set your clippers to the same length that you used on the body so that it blends in nicely.
Some groomers leave the hair on the top of the head longer, but that’s more complicated, so you may want to wait until you have more grooming experience before attempting it.
Next, cut around the mouth and nose using either straight or curved scissors, whichever you are more comfortable with.
This is a delicate process – you don’t want to accidentally injure any part of the nose or mouth.
Take your scissors and cut the long hairs around the muzzle. Maltipoos tend to stick out their tongues, so be mindful of this when trimming this area.
For the rest of the face, namely ears, chin, and sides, use your curved scissors.
Begin with the chin and shape the hair evenly all the way up to the base of the ears.
Carefully trimming the hair on the edges of the ears will make them look rounder.
This process takes time, and a bit of practice to master, as using scissors requires more precision than a clipper or trimmer.
It’s generally a good idea to watch a professional groomer in action before giving it a try yourself. You can even head over to YouTube for this!
Remember to stay relaxed when grooming your Maltipoo.
Use calming language and start when they are young so that your Maltipoo becomes accustomed to being groomed.
If your dog seems fidgety or nervous, it’s best to postpone until he or she is more relaxed.
If you force the issue, it can be quite traumatic for your dog.
If your Maltipoo is nervous by nature, it’s probably best to go to a professional groomer.
Whatever route you decide to take, the most important thing is to make sure that your Maltipoo is groomed regularly.
A well-groomed Maltipoo is a happy Maltipoo. After all, everyone feels better after a good haircut!
I am a practiced pet owner with decades of experience owning a number of different pets. I am also the main writer and chief editor here at Pet Educate; a site I created to share everything I’ve learned about pet ownership over the years and my extensive research along the way.